Yuxiang (simplified Chinese: 鱼香; traditional Chinese: 魚香; pinyin: yúxiāng; literally: "fish fragrance") is a famous seasoning mixture in Chinese cuisine. The term also refers to the sauce produced after meat or vegetables are cooked. Yuxiang started in Sichuan cuisine. Later, other regional Chinese cuisines also used it.
Meaning of the nameEdit
The name in Chinese means "fish fragrance". However, it contains no seafood and is typically not added to seafood. There is a legend after the meaning of the name. The sauce was used regularly by a mother to cook freshwater fish for her family. However, there was once the family have no fish. The mother then took the leftover sauce to flavour meats and everyone liked the dish. This is the reason it got its name YuXiang or fish flavored. Cooking Yuxiang normally involves the use of sugar, vinegar, doubanjiang, soy sauce, and pickled chili peppers. 
The ingredients of yuxiang are finely minced pao la jiao (pickled chili), white scallion, ginger, and garlic. They are mixed in more-or-less equal portions. Some people prefer more scallions than ginger and garlic.The mixture is then fried in oil until fragrant. Water, starch, sugar, and vinegar are then added to create a basic sauce.
The sauce is used most often for dishes containing beef, pork, or chicken. It is sometimes used for vegetarian recipes. Barbara Tropp suggests in a book called The Modern Art of Chinese Cooking that Yuxiang can also be mean "Sichuan-Hunan" flavor. Dishes that use yuxiang as the main seasoning have the term (yuxiang) placed in front of the name of the dish.
Some examples are as follows:
- Fuchsia Dunlop. Land of Plenty: A Treasury of Authentic Sichuan Cooking. (2003). 395 pag. ISBN 0393051773, ISBN 978-0393051773
- Kiple, Kenneth F. The Cambridge world history of food. 2. Cambridge University Press. p. 1174. ISBN 9780521402156. Retrieved 3 October 2016.
- JR Stevens. Szechuan Chinese Cuisine: Spicy and Delicious Recipes of China. (2017). 101 pp. ASIN B074LK4KZP
- Schrecker, Ellen. Mrs. Chiang's Szechwan Cookbook. askmar publishing. p. 137. ISBN 9781935842101. Retrieved 3 October 2016.
- Pei-Mei, Fu. Pei-Mei's Chinese Cookbook Volume 1. askmar publishing. p. 189. ISBN 9781935842040. Retrieved 3 October 2016.